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The Tuskegee News
Tuskegee, Alabama
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July 20, 2000     The Tuskegee News
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Page A-4, The Tuskegee News, July 20, 2000 Coach's death community's loss The death of a young person is always cause for sadness. While Donald "D.J." Johnson wasn't a youngster by any means at 33, he was young in the eyes of many he was in close association with. A popular coach at Notasulga High School, the father of a two-month-old baby who had celebrated his first wed- ding anniversary only two days before his death from what is believed to have been a massive heart attack, Coach Johnson made an impact on numerous young men and women at the school and in the community. One observation by a former member of the girls softball team at Notasulga he coached to the state tournament this past spring only to see his father die during the sectional tournament, tells much about Coach Johnson. She said Coach Johnson cared not only about his players as a/h- letes, but as young men and women as well. Coach Johnson will be missed in the Notasulga commu- nity and by the Macon County school system. But most of all, he'll be missed by his wife, Shana, and son Preston, a young man who will never get to know his father in this life. Those who knew Coach Johnson are certain to have gained from those relationships. For that, we can be thankful that he passed our way. Drug costs should be cheaper Montgomery Advertiser Two government agencies that perform similar services could save taxpayers $300 million a year by simply chang- ing the way they buy certain products. It would be goofy not to go for the savings, right? Well, the departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs are being goofy. If the two federal departments combined their drug pre- scription operations, they could negotiate deep discounts with drug manufacturers. That, in turn, would save tax- payers millions they're now spending because the two agencies buy their drugs separately. The findings were disclosed in a General Accounting Office report to a congressional subcommittee headed by U.S. Rap. Terry, Everett~ ~R:~hferpriSe. ' Everettwas understandably puzzled. With $1.5 billion in savings over five years, "I want to know why it is not being done right now," he said. Absolutely. VA and Defense Department officials take issue with the audit, claiming a joint contract with drug companies may force many patients to change medica- tions, But that's a hollow complaint. Many private consumers face such I restrictions with their HMOs or current health insurance plans. And there's nothing to say that patients who need specific drugs not covered under a joint buying agreement couldn't still get them. The VA and Defense complaints sound more like an attempt at protecting turf than taxpayer interests. The two agencies fill more than 140 million prescriptions between them each year. That kind of clout could be used to negotiate deep discounts with drug companies. This is real money. In the few areas where they do buy jointly, the agencies saved substantially: more than $85 on 100 blood pressure tablets and more than $720 for 500 tablets of an ulcer-fighting drug. Everett is right to push the Pentagon and VA to work together on negotiating with drug companies on prescrip- tion prices The money spent doesn't belong to those agen- cies; it belongs to taxpayers. They have a duty to save money anytime they can do it without hurting their mission. This obviously is one of those times. A worthy pledge I believe every person has worth as an individuaL I believe every person is entitled to dignity and respect, regardless of race or color. I believe every thought or act, of racial prejudice is harmful I believe that that if it is my thought or act, it is harmful to me as well as to others. Therefore, from this day forward I will strive daily to eliminate racial prejudice from my thoughts and \ WINS'TON" Winston CountyAlabama tal ed~ [much pgra~r ~ven ] ldoes !made ~ions le~, fi ~ r{ [place even !end, ~re, a p exp~ Iaowd ~to s~ ted dc ~beut r onq tede ;or; Fer-o~ ceto le/ha = " "----" ~ don't fP yol ~11 bei lckets ntto The first to become targets wilier news media for reporting all this~urn'~ again think of Gov. Walli~ce in this!ear t It's News to Me Will Auburn get death penalty Let's just shuck it down, or, as Gov. George Wallace liked to say, let's "get the hay down where the goats can get it": Auburn University is paying out millions to former coaches to keep them from talking about the corruption in the sports depart- ment. (Do you wonder why ticket prices keep going up?) Montgomery banker Bobby Lowder has total, absolute control of the AU board of trustees with eight votes he can count on in a 12-member board. Dr. William Muse, a good, decent, honor- able man, has absolutely no control, zero final control, over the University or its ath- letics program. Former coaches are paid millions and ordered not "to speak ill" of the university or its trustees to keep the fired coaches from talking about the corrupt sports program. Information about the corruption at Auburn University has been forwarded to the National Collegiate Athletic Association, but not by Bowden. Terry Bowden is being ordered out of his house because of a personal vendetta by Bobby Lowder. It remains a deep mystery why Lowder would pursue Bowden at this stage. He must know that if the issue ever goes to court or if the NCAA comes calling, Bowden will raise his right hand and tell the truth. I have watched a booster hand out cash--big, big bills, to a University athlete. I know one Auburn banker who was "ordered" to make a loan for an expensive car for an AU superstar when that individu- al had never filled out a credit application, had no gainful employment--except football-- and had less than $100 in a checking account. David Housel, director of athletics, must run EVERY major decision by Lowder. When Lowder makes the decision, Housel forwards it to Dr. Muse. Housel is in the job he never even dreamed of having. Yet, he is most lonely sit- ting atop this corrupt program. Housel is a good man. But to keep his dream job he has to "go along to get along" as they say in the legislature. Strange thing is that Housel has been one of he most respected individuals around the sports programs. And for years he ran a major portion of the NCAA basket- ball tournaments. He could stand up to Lowder and survived, but he doesn't seem to believe that. But the longer he sits deep inside the catacombs of a seriously tainted program, the more his Paul Davis credibility will suffer. Boy, I wish he'd stand up for himself and the good name of Auburn University. Dr. Muse is out of the loop on this and most university affairs, especially the ones which hay ecome pets or enemies of Low- der's. Remember the emasculation of the jour- nalism program after the student newspaper Plainsman printed too many stories critical of Lowder? Remember the death of the doctoral pro- gram in economics--supported by Lowder adversary John Denson, an Opelika attorney and a former member of the Auburn board? Dr. Must has about 30 months left on his contract as AU president./He also could stand up against Lowder, l~ut I don't think he believes that. he can. He's in the same box with Housel. Dr. Muse, I believe, will stay on after his contract ends as president and teach as a tenured professor unless the heat gets extremely hot and the NCAA comes in to investigate. Muse loves the Auburn commtmity, as does his wife. But they don't like the direction in which the university's headed. The major display about the so-called Bowden-era at Auburn has been removed from the museum in the football complex. The University's not telling the truth about this. Heck, it's not telling the truth about anything. Dr. Muse will soon have to acknowledge that he has absolutely no control over the athletics department. He will have to say that ALL decisions are made by Lowder. We need to start now determining who were are going to blame if and when Auburn's athletic programs go down like the Titanic. We all love to place blame and we all too oi~n place it in the wrong places. Placing the blame--usually on the messenger--some- how makes us feel much better. There's going to be a boat load of blame when the axe falls on AU sports. And it is going to fall. Count on it. He loved to say: j's e.or ~nose damn lying newspapers pr~rsitv damn lying thing I say." 5:_ Wow! I Next the blame shifts to Terry t ~: then comes David Housel, director 0 ics, then Dr. Muse, then maybe, just ~re i someone will bring up the name 0 d Lowder who has become the absolut Yaat tor of Auburn (Lowder) University--$ ~ ~g k~ of the university, starting first ~t~rie., sports programs. S ~eg~ It's not a pretty sight. ~ tele Auburn is headed, I strongly be] l~arn major penalties against the AU sp x ab gram, maybe even the death penalty' ~ nosl And it all got new life with the si] dre; regarding fired Coach Bowden and :a Am time work for ABC sports. The University could have let the contract rock along until its come to an end. But, no, the (Lowder) wants to force Bowden home and out of town. but versity is not even paying the gage (nearly $7,000) on the That cash is coming from the a/ion. Is it under the control The demand to boot Bowden home set the stage for the ugly University now faces. Alabama's newspapers have dozens of editorials about the sorry affairs at the state's largest the meddling by Lowder in both affairs and sports programs. Mu~ Crimson Tide fans smile. The demand that ing arbitration has set the stage may be a mighty fall for the That blame lies solely on the Lowder. The contract with Bowden by Dr. Muse, Auburn president that Dr. Muse was not even the demands which were to made den to pack up and leave his about a lack of institutional control? And when there is a lack of control, the National Collegiate Association (NCAA) comes down hard. It probably is the most which can be levied against a higher education. If that case is der no doubt would have to leave (See PAUL Serving Macon County Since 1865 The Tuskegee News (ISSN: 644480) is published weekly by Tuskegee Newspapers, Inc. 120 Eastside Street, Tuskegee, Alabama, 36083. Phone (334) 727-3020. Second Class Postage paid at Tuskegee, Alabama. POSTMASTER -- send One year ago: A showdown between Tuskegee Ron Williams and four members of the city council is ing over whether or not the council should or could hire a city manager. Mayor Williams has hired an contest the action supported by council members Washington, Lateefah Muhammad, Jess Rozell Chappell Jr... The Tuskegkee University team, defending Southern Intecollegiate Athletic (SIAC) champion, has been tabbed to finish second Albany State for the 2000 season in a pre-season poll actions, address changes to The Tuskegee News, P.O. Drawer, ference coaches and officials... I will discourage racial prejudice by others at 830060 Tuskegee, Alabama, 36083. This newspaper is print- every opportunity. I L ed on 100 ercent r c cled er , Fwe" years ago: Teams representing" Tuskege p e y pap to aid in the nations con- , ~ll Notasulga will be Macon County entrms m the D~xm I will treat all people with dignity and respect, servation efforts. Subscription rate in Macon County, $25 [ " " _ " " " r~.| |l Major League (11 12) Tournament at West R~dge P ..... per year, outside of Macon County, $31 50 per year, outside " I will strive daily to honor this IMedoe, knowlna I ..... " _ ~1 ........ L ..... -- - -- - ~ state of Alabama .~35 her year I upefiKa.., t~ooert L. "Bobby" Davis, president of/ mar rne worlo Will De a Defter place oecause or my ' "~ ~" -' ma Exch n ' " " ] a ge Bank in Tuskegee, was inducted znt~ll effort. Paul R Davis Publisher [ State University's Accounting Hall of Honor... 1 Take the pledge: Gayle Davis, Vice Pres;dent and Treasurer I Ten ear " ........ " I y s ago. rusKegee nauve Aaam oenvi Guy Rhodes, Associate Pubhsher/Editor . . . Paul LaVread, General Manager/Advertising Director [ .............. 'l will co-star m the FOX Network comedy series True C ~ - .............. I . rLaney ua~cmngs, zormer neaa coacn a~ rraxrz~ , Yazrlcla MOOn, UlllCe/tslassiileo Aa Manager . . . Your name Today s date ............ [ A&M, has been hxred by Tuskegee Umvers~ty Head F~